S1E118: What are the stories you want to tell with your life?

  • 6 Dec 2023

It is always good to start having end-of life conversations early.

Synopsis: Every first and third Wednesday of the month, The Straits Times helps you make sense of health matters that affect you.

End-of-life planning is never easy. A better way could be to start the process early by planning for the life you want to lead and leave behind. 

After all, death is a part of life, and it may be helpful to start thinking about it years before, said a palliative care doctor and a surgeon who does not shy away from talking about death and dying well with her patients.

In this episode, ST senior health correspondent Joyce Teo speaks to two guests. They discuss the importance of end-of-life planning and palliative care, and how talking about death can help us come to terms with this reality.  

Dr Tan Yia Swam is a breast surgeon with her own practice at Mount Alvernia Hospital. She was a former Nominated MP and the past president of the Singapore Medical Association.

Dr Shirlynn Ho is the deputy head and senior consultant of the Division of Supportive & Palliative Care at National Cancer Centre Singapore. 

Highlights (click/tap above):

1:08 Broaching the topic of palliative care

6:30 Why is there a rising urgency for palliative care?

10:41 Story about a dying patient

13:32 How do medical professionals convey information to families?

Produced by: Joyce Teo (joyceteo@sph.com.sg), Ernest Luis, Amirul Karim and Eden Soh

Edited by: Eden Soh

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